Bad Thesis 2: The government has the right to limit free speech.

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You will answer the question in your support of your main points.

Writing in college often takes the form of persuasion – convincing others that you have an interesting, logical point of view on the subject you are studying. Persuasion is a skill you practice regularly in your daily life. You persuade your roommate to clean up, your parents to let you borrow the car, your friend to vote for your favorite candidate or policy. In college, course assignments often ask you to make a persuasive case in writing. You are asked to convince your reader of your point of view. This form of persuasion, often called academic argument, follows a predictable pattern in writing. After a brief introduction of your topic, you state your point of view on the topic directly and often in one sentence. This sentence is the thesis statement, and it serves as a summary of the argument you’ll make in the rest of your paper.

Bad Thesis 2: There are always alternatives to using racist speech.

What is the purpose of the thesis statement? The thesis statement guides you, enabling you to focus your research paper and outline what you will write. It allows you to clarify your thinking and determine what is relevant and irrelevant as you do your research. Your research paper must be thesis-driven. A high school level “report” will not receive a passing grade. The thesis must pull together the analysis that follows. Your thesis statement must be specific – it should cover only what you will discuss in your research paper and must be supported with specific evidence. The thesis statement usually appears at the end of the first paragraph of a paper. Early in your paper I should be able to locate the thesis statement. If I ask you “Where is the thesis statement?” you should be able to point to it immediately.

In your speeches, you want to make points like Rochelle did. Your speeches should make solid arguments that support your thesis statement--that way you’ll best convince or inform your audience. To give solid arguments, you need to come up with points that support your thesis. If your thesis was, "I will show that Speed Racer is a great show" (A persuasive thesis), what would three good points be for this thesis? Here are three points I came up with. First, Speed Racer has great voice dubbing. Second, Speed Racer’s animation is so bad that its good. Third, Speed always wins out against the odds. What points would work for an informative thesis like, "I will describe an unkempt refrigerator." Hmmm. I’d probably use points like the frozen follies, the leftovers that should have been left, and the notes on the door that were never noticed. All it takes to choose points for your speech is to think up main arguments that support your thesis. Give it a try--come up with points for your speech.

STORIES: Detailed accounts of the experiences of others.

Which side made a more convincing speech? The answer to that question is for you to decide, but it seems to me that Rochelle made clearer and better supported points. She had two clear points. I’m not sure what Steve’s points were, he doesn’t seem to care about other people and his ramblings about the many doctors and hospitals didn’t address the topic.

When you use the Aid in your speech:

Better Thesis 2: The "fighting words" exception to free speech is not legitimate because it wrongly considers speech as an action.


Central Idea: "The two major forms of hula that have played an important role in Hawaiian history and have developed into unique dances are the Kahiko and 'Auana."Speech 151 students can find more examples of specific purpose statements and central ideas on pages of 240-251 of our text.

How to Write a Thesis Statement.

Notice that the only thing connecting these main points together is the fact that they are about the Zapatistas. That isn’t going to make a cohesive speech. Instead, try these kinds of main points:

The thesis statement is a vital part of your speech.

A good argumentative thesis provides not only a position on an issue, but also suggests the structure of the paper. The thesis should allow the reader to imagine and anticipate the flow of the paper, in which a sequence of points logically prove the essay's main assertion. A list essay provides no such structure, so that different points and paragraphs appear arbitrary with no logical connection to one another.